finding a crumb, i follow the trail, my cheeks hot for accusations unfounded which now, finally, before the brick wall, i bring validity.

sadness, deep sorrow, that care comes to this… willing to skulk along silently, inhale the scent of a solitary crumb before laying it reverently upon my tongue to slowly dissolve.

i follow the trails of letters and languages, lore and limping steps upon a path toward a life-long goal. i remember the days when this water was welcome. today, you would rather die of dehydration than drink.

i refuse to ask ‘why’ anymore. like the gleaner i am, i walk silent, steady steps, careful hands upon the bucket, water to spare.

the sound of your dusty, dry cough wrenches my heart. but it is taboo to offer what is not requested. strange etiquette, savage it seems. your increasingly desperate cry, “water…. water….” is painful; avoidance of the largess that paces behind at respectful distance.

once, it made me angry. but over time, i understood. should you collapse, should you shudder in the throes of arid, deathly denial, even still, i will keep my place. it is not a question of what i would give, but of what you would receive.

the oasis remains.

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